Dec. 16, 2019 By Allie Griffin
A hit-and-run driver fatally struck a pedestrian in Woodside Wednesday after blowing through a red light while drunk, according to police.
The driver, 50-year-old Jorge Samaniego of Maspeth, then fled the scene after hitting the pedestrian on Broadway at 60th Street at around 8 p.m. While fleeing, he collided with a car at 61st Street and Broadway–after running yet another red light. That collision led to a four-car pile up, injuring two more people, police said.
Samaniego faces a litany of charges including assault, aggravated vehicular assault, aggravated driving while intoxicated, reckless driving, motor vehicle failure to yield to a pedestrian/bicyclist, leaving the scene of an accident, and running a red light.
The pedestrian killed was 47-year-old Alberto Zamacona from Woodside. His death was just one of a series of crashes.
Samaniego initially had a collision at Broadway and 55th Street. While fleeing that incident, he hit Zamacona while traveling eastbound on Broadway near 60th Street, police said.
Police said Zamacona was crossing within the crosswalk–with the pedestrian signal–when he was struck. Zamacona mounted the hood of the car before falling to the pavement.
Samaniego continued eastbound on Broadway. He crossed into the lanes in the opposite direction, ran another red light at 61st Street and struck a 2013 Toyota Prius, which was stopped at the light.
The Prius was pushed backwards into a 2015 Toyota Sienna which in turn struck a 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee, police said.
The reckless driving rampage left pedestrian Zamacona lying on the roadway with severe head trauma. EMS rushed him to NYC Health and Hospitals/Elmhurst, where he died two days later on Friday, Dec. 13.
The drivers of the Toyota Prius and the Toyota Sienna were also taken to NYC Health and Hospitals/Elmhurst in stable condition, where they were treated and released.
Police arrested Samaniego at the scene of the four-car pile up.